The walk-on program at Wisconsin is a point of pride for all Badgers. In the sixth round, with pick No. 206, former walk-on defensive lineman Matt Henningsen was selected by the Denver Broncos, adding another chapter to the success stories that UW has developed.
Over his four years in Madison, Henningsen racked up 92 tackles (13.5 for loss), 8.5 sacks, four passes defended and two fumble recoveries, both returned for touchdowns in 37 overall games. He was named third team All-Big Ten by the coaches after his senior season.
The 6-foot-3 and 289 pound native of Menomonee Falls will slot right in to a defensive end slot in Denver’s 3-4 defense and was a finalist for the 2021 William V. Campbell Trophy (also known as the “Academic Heisman”) after earning his degree in electrical engineering with a perfect 4.0 GPA.
Our Owen Riese said:
A former walk on at Wisconsin, he started as a redshirt freshman and never let go of the spot. He’s a freak athlete who busts his butt in the weight room and is going to be a great addition to any locker room. He’s an active, strong, athletic defensive lineman who is at his best on the move, attacking as opposed to trying to hold the point of attack and occupy blockers in an odd front. If he can improve his pass rush, his value on sub package downs will help make him nearly impossible to cut.
Matt Henningsen was drafted with pick 206 of round 6 in the 2022 draft class. He scored a 9.34 RAS out of a possible 10.00. This ranked 98 out of 1459 DT from 1987 to 2022. https://t.co/4mtlIYPCFL #RAS #Broncos pic.twitter.com/UiilekRgII— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 30, 2022
Henningsen joins a Denver team that already has former Badgers RB Melvin Gordon and QB Russell Wilson on the roster as well as Whitewater’s OG Quinn Meinerz.